Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Why do we 'fight' and who are we fighting with?

I was reading about Governor Ted Strickland's "Fight for Ohio Bus Tour" and it struck me - why do political campaigns and candidates use the term 'fight'?

I don't recall if the term was used in any of my campaign commercials, but my impression is that the use of the term is on the rise:

"fight for you"
"fight for my district"
"fight for Ohio"
"fight the special interests"
"fight the spending"

and on and on and on.

Do you think that the use of the word is indicative of the more polarized political environment? Or has it spurred more polarization?

Not to pick on Gov. Strickland, but since it was his bus tour that started me down this road, I cannot help but wonder who he is fighting against? And why must he fight? Aren't we supposed to be trying to get along with our enemies and 'understand' them? Aren't we supposed to reject violence in favor of talk and mediation and compromise? Don't we teach our children not to fight and to find other means to resolve our differences?

Don't these political messages contradict other messages the politicians are sending?

I realize this post is full of questions and not many answers, but I admit that I don't know the answers.

What I do know is that 'fighting' for me or for my state is supposed to evoke an emotional response to make you want to trust, or agree or have confidence in the person promising to do so. It's supposed to make you feel as if the politician is on your side. But I don't make decisions about voting based upon emotion, though I know others do. So is this supposed to appeal to baser instincts in hopes of overcoming logic, reason and evaluation of records?

Again, I don't know. But I cannot help but think this approach is part of an overall problem and not a solution in and of itself.

3 comments:

Mad Jack said...

It's a popular phrase and Strickland hopes that using it will help get him re-elected. In this case Strickland is fighting against any and all individuals, groups or politicos who oppose the Ohio bus tour - whatever the hell that is.

I think an effective counter to this might be to emphasize a different phrase, such as 'work'. For instance, if your opponent says that he will fight for his constituents civil rights, you might respond by asking him just how many three minute rounds he thinks he can go before he collapses, then follow up with the statement that long after the tenth round you'll still be getting up at six every morning and working to restore the civil rights that the Moonbats took away from the good, honest people in Lucas county, and you'll do that one day after another just as regular as death and taxes.

Maybe that last part could be rewritten.

Tim Higgins said...

Maggie,

I fear that politicians use the term "fight" for the same reason that they use the term "war" when talking about their 'campaigns' against poverty and drugs. They feel that by adopting a military pose that somehow their efforts will be worthy of either honor, glory, or both.

What they invariably do is trivialize the very terms they seek to employ. The shamelessness of their attempts and the shame they heap on real effort does disservice to the memory of anyone who has indeed 'fought' in a 'war'.

skeeter1107 said...

It sounds better than "screwing."

Google Analytics Alternative